Utah juice bar charges liberals $1 more

SALT LAKE CITY — A juice bar that charges liberals $1 more than conservatives says those on the political left are happy to oblige in the Utah oil town of Vernal – “all three of them,” the owner jokes.

But wait. Do conservatives favor almond milk with blended avocado?

Yes, says George Burnett, a conservative who happens to be a fitness nut and a fan of healthy food. Weeks after he opened the I Love Drilling Smoothie &Juice Bar, he’s listing one price for conservatives and $1 more for liberals, whom he blames for many of the country’s problems.

“At my prices, it’s still a good deal. But those who believe in big government and reckless spending cost all of us. So I should charge them more,” Burnett said Wednesday.

Skeptics on the shop’s Facebook page point out that Vernal, population around 9,000, has few liberals, so Burnett has little to lose by charging them more, winning the loyalty of roughnecks and “raking in the dough.” The shop was devoid Wednesday of any liberal customers who could offer a rebuttal. Burnett and a son acknowledged they were stripping comments by liberals from their shop’s Facebook page.

“Isn’t this a form of discrimination — what if they charged Asians or Indians more?” Stephen Borton, one of Vernal’s few Democrats, told The Associated Press. “This is dinosaur land. We get people from all over the world, and this is the wrong kind of publicity.”

The nearby Dinosaur National Monument draws thousands of tourists.

Burnett notes he doesn’t skimp on fresh ingredients but is restrained from trying to charge New York-style prices. He charges $5 for a 16-ounce juice smoothie — $6 for liberals.

Burnett says he doesn’t interrogate customers, but if they offer that they’re liberal, he charges more. Recently, a couple stopped by — he was conservative, she was liberal — and the husband “paid conservative for himself and liberal for her,” he said.

Burnett can’t really tell a liberal by appearance “unless they drive up with out-of-state plates in a Subaru,” he said. “I know it because they flip me off.”

Vernal is close to the Colorado border and a point of entry for mountain bikers seeking Utah’s canyon solitude.

One customer, fitness coach Corey Peterson, says the shop’s liberal surcharge is a “fantastic” idea.

“I think the liberals are the cause of a lot of this country’s problems and they need to pay more,” Corey said while sipping a green concoction of almond milk, avocado, spinach, cucumbers, kamut grass, Greek yogurt and honey-like agave.

Burnett said he was putting aside liberal surcharges for conservative causes. This month he’s donating it to the Heritage Foundation.

More in Local News

House Democrats: Use capital gains tax to keep property tax rate lower

But they are setting up a potential showdown with the Supreme Court over school funding.

Water to be shut off for 100 homes next Wednesday, Thursday

The pipe closing will affect people in the Snohomish and Monroe areas starting Feb. 28.

Northshore School District bond for new elementary now passing

As of Tuesday, the $275 million proposal was comfortably above the 60 percent supermajority.

Man shot in Marysville remains critical; 2 suspects at large

Police haven’t been able to interview the victim because of his condition.

Everett pastor’s life was inspired by Rev. Billy Graham

The first crusade Brian Harpell ever attended was when the Christian evangelist came to his hometown.

Front Porch

HEADS UP Roesiger history book goes digital “On the Trail of Richard… Continue reading

“Compromised by deterioration,” Everett apartments condemned

The city says the conditions at Broadway Station Apartments were unsafe for tenants.

Clear, cold weather could give way midweek to chance of snow

A chance of lowland snow looms for Snohomish County by… Continue reading

Load up: Cheesecake Factory plans Lynnwood location

The chain restaurant is listed as a tenant in new development at Alderwood mall.

Most Read